Employment and Industrial Relations Law

Revised Financial Aid Package for Employers Impacted by COVID-19

25 Mar 2020

3 min read

On the 18th of March 2020, the Government announced measures to assist employers in these anomalous times. Following agreement made with unions and employers, additional measures were introduced during a press conference on the 24th of March 2020 as per the following:

    1. The original financial aid package had stipulated that the government would pay workers two days’ wage based on an €800 monthly wage. The Government will now finance a full five-day work week at a minimum of €800 per month for all workers and self-employed in [1] critical sectors that were decimated by the coronavirus measures. This measure also applies to part-time employees at a reduced €500 per month.
    2. In addition to the grant of €800, employers have agreed to fork out a minimum top-up of €400 per month per employee to ensure that each employee receives a minimum of €1,200 per month.
    3. Employers that cannot afford the top-up will have to obtain permission from the Director of Labour (DIER).
    4. Government to finance one day per week in wages, based on a monthly pay of €800, for companies and sectors hit by reduced consumption (such as manufacturing & warehousing amongst others). This may eventually increase to two days. With regards to Gozitans in this particular sector, the government will be financing the equivalent of 2 days’ salary.
    5. Those self-employed individuals who have their own employees shall receive a grant equivalent to three days’ salary per week (based on an assumed monthly salary of €800). This has been retained from the original financial aid package.
    6. Grant of €800 per month (capped at two months) will be given to one of the spouses (who work in the private sector and are unable to work remotely) so that either spouse can stay at home with the children (since schools are closed). This has been retained from the original financial aid package.
    7. Persons with disabilities who are unable to work from home and decide to stop working due to health concerns are entitled to an €800 per month for a specified period. This has been retained from the original financial aid package.
    8. Individuals whose full-time employment has been terminated with effect from 9th March 2020 shall benefit from a temporary increase in unemployment benefit capped at €800 monthly. This has been retained from the original financial aid package.
    9. A grant of €350 per employee to companies that have employees on mandatory quarantine. This has been retained from the original financial aid package.
    10. Applications for eligible businesses can be downloaded from the following link maltaenterprise.com

These measures are applicable retrospectively from the 9th of March 2020.

For further information about how GVZH Advocates can help you with your employment legal query, kindly contact us on employment@gvzh.mt.

[1] These critical sectors include wholesale, retail, accommodation, food and beverage service activities, vehicle rentals, tour operators, travel agencies and other related enterprises, security companies, building services companies, transport companies, creative, arts, and entertainment activities, personal activities – such as barbers, beauticians, and other similar enterprises. All activities hit by forced closure as a result of public health measures will benefit from this scheme.